- Category: Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)
- Published: 04 March 2015
John Green. Nicholas Sparks. George R.R. Martin. J.K Rowling. These are just a few authors that have published brilliant pieces in the world of novels. Authors such as these ones have created elaborate escapes for readers everywhere. Unfortunately, many of these interpretive realms are not experienced as much as they could be.
Reading a good book is a forgotten treasure, especially for students juggling work, class, and internships. In between required textbooks readings and homework, it is rare for college students to sit down and immerse themselves in a good read. Nowadays, so many books are being turned into movies too, so young people do not feel the need to read the story if they can visualize it through a film.
Chelsea Sebastian, a senior English education major with an endorsement in special education, finds time to read. Sebastian said, “I love reading for pleasure because it lets me escape the craziness of being a college student. It becomes difficult to read for pleasure when I have so many assigned readings, but it’s important because it gives me a chance to choose a book I really want to read and get lost in it.”
Other students should contemplate making time to read more books, as it correlates to many health and psychological benefits.
If you consider yourself a bookworm, then you have likely already experienced the euphoria that comes with finishing a story. It might move you to tears, or give you a sensation you cannot shake. These feelings building up from our favorite books are not just fleeting either; they are helping us understand the world better.
According to the New York Times article, “Your Brain on Fiction,” research has proven that “stories stimulate the brain and even change how we act in life.”
There is also a connection between the brain networks used to comprehend stories and the networks used to physically interact with other people.
Rachel Fox, a senior English education major with an endorsement in special education, believes a book touched her early on in life. “I read A Corner of the Universe in the fifth grade. It was about a boy with special needs. It opened my eyes to the struggle of people with disabilities. I feel like it had a major impact on me ending up as a special education major.” As Fox experienced, books can open your mind to issues you have never even considered thinking about.
If you’re looking to heighten your reading experience, try going old-fashioned with a paperback book. The reason? According to The Guardian, a study found that readers who used a Kindle were significantly worse at recalling events during mystery stories than paperback readers were. Plus, if it’s just you and the book, chances are you will be less distracted by messages, alerts and e-mails on your tablet.
“There’s nothing better than finding a good book that you don’t want to put down. Having that feeling of being so intrigued by what you’re reading that time passes by without even realizing is what makes it so worth it.” Sebastian said.
Something about cozying up alone with a book and escaping to another world is a liberating experience. You become the story and you, in a sense, visualize the characters as you please.
Even if you don’t necessarily love fiction, biographies can be an inspiring choice too. Kristine Simoes, a specialist professor of communication, said, “I only read real people’s lives. I like the real deal. I’ve been reading biographies since I was 15 and I only like non-fiction. I’ve read everything from Mike Tyson to Cheryl Strayed.”
Huffington Post reported a study that revealed reading books was the most effective way to overcome stress, even more so than listening to music, drinking tea or walking. Other findings include warring off Alzheimer’s, easing depression and helping you sleep better.
So, reading a good book doesn’t just make you healthier; it can make you a happier, more open-minded person as well. Plus, if you’re reading the genre you enjoy, what more can you ask for? Now that you’ve finished reading this, get yourself to Barnes and Noble and embark on your next literary adventure.
IMAGE TAKEN from @ElizzyRanator on Instagram